Confront Mugabe head-on: Gumbo

HARARE - Liberation struggle stalwart and spokesperson of the “original” Zanu PF that uses the slogan “People First”, Rugare Gumbo, says the only way positive change will take place in the country is if Zimbabweans agitate for this constitutionally but robustly from President Robert Mugabe and the ruling party — and not employ “empty boycott protests”.

Speaking in an interview with the Daily News yesterday, in the wake of the post-congress Zanu PF’s hollow victories in last week’s by-elections which were boycotted by the main opposition MDC led by former prime minister Morgan Tsvangirai, Gumbo said Zimbabweans needed to do more to foster democracy in the country.

He also defended his Zanu PF formation’s “moral support” for a number of independent candidates who took part in the by-elections even as they were “always aware that our erstwhile comrades are grand masters in vote manipulation”.

“That was a bogus and sham election full of irregularities and intimidation. The CIO (Central Intelligence Organisation), and post-congress Zanu PF party members were running the show.

“Zec (the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission) failed to conduct a free and fair election. It allowed Zanu PF to supervise the whole process and what really happened was unbelievable — a lot of intimidation and a lot of violence.

“This whole process must be overhauled. It is a rotten system which stinks to high heaven,” the straight-talking Gumbo said.

Asked whether the main opposition was right in boycotting the elections, Gumbo said in his view staying away from electoral processes would not on its own give the “shameless post-congress Zanu PF any sleepless nights” — but would instead allow it to enjoy what it had always dreamt about, “the creation of a one-party state”.

“Let us take them head-on. They want to push their programmes without any opposition. But what we have had are mere by-elections. When we go to national elections, it will be difficult for them to cheat as they did in these by-elections,” he said.

In the run-up to the discredited by-elections, the Zanu PF leadership — including Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa — urged the MDC to continue boycotting elections while expectedly ignoring to address needed electoral reforms.

“They have nothing to offer the people… all they do is to boycott elections while we continue to rule. They (MDC-T) have no legacy without calling for election boycott. We shall rule…and rule… and rule while they continue to boycott the elections,” Mnangagwa said at one of his rallies before the by-elections.

Gumbo a former Cabinet minister with intimate knowledge of the modus operandi of Zanu PF said his “power hungry” erstwhile comrades were not easily shaken by “petty resistance” — hence his call for a more robust approach to demands for change.

Commenting on social network site Facebook, political analyst Pedzisai Ruhanya concurred with Gumbo saying by boycotting the recent by-elections, Tsvangirai had only managed to give away power to Zanu PF in his urban strongholds.

“Zanu PF has come to town (Harare, Kwekwe and Bulawayo) courtesy of a clumsy decision by MDC-T. The opposition must now budget for violent bases, torture chambers, and huge patronage networks to be set up by Zanu PF as it defends its seats in 2018!

“As I write there is QUEEN OF GRACE ZIM ASSET TRUST set up by Zanu PF to bring all vendors in the Harare city centre to Zanu PF; all vendors are buying cards to join this group” Ruhanya said.

Obert Gutu, spokesperson of the MDC, said yesterday that the opposition would reclaim its seats and more in the eagerly-anticipated 2018 national elections — on condition that necessary electoral reforms were put in place.

“The MDC is going to resoundingly reclaim its territory as soon as conditions for a free and fair plebiscite are put in place. Mind you, Zanu PF is a crumbling edifice and by the time we get to 2018, there will be virtually no Zanu PF to talk about.

“They are busy decimating each other and at the rate they are self-cannibalising, Zanu PF will soon be as extinct as the dodo of Mauritius,” Gutu said.

Notwithstanding the fact that the main opposition had shunned the by-elections, a rattled Zanu PF — severely weakened by debilitating and seemingly unstoppable factional and succession wars — threw everything at the electorate in its desperation not to lose the seats that were up for grabbing.

Mugabe’s two deputies Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko led massive and expensive campaigns across the country almost on a full-time basis.

“I have never seen anything like this in my life in politics where both of the VPs were campaigning as if those were general elections.

“To have the whole leadership making fools of themselves and saying if you don’t vote for Zanu PF you will not benefit from any development programmes was indeed laughable, albeit expected from the post-congress Zanu PF.

“As People First, we will continue to demand development and we will take part in any future elections because that is the only way the post-congress Zanu PF can be moved,” Gumbo said.


Comments (19)

We are sick and tired of your Mutasa said this Gumbo said that rubbish mister chief reporter....asi murikubhadharwa? Your stories are so predictable ad nauseum~!!!!

Michael - 17 June 2015

Yes, report more of these so that the fight goes nasty.

Ambassador Percy - 17 June 2015

Yes, report more of these so that the fight goes nasty.

Ambassador Percy - 17 June 2015

Sometimes this Pedzisayi just talk without thinking . Voters do not like by elections bcoz they change nothing and this is supported by the poor voter turnout every time they are by elections . Come next general elections it will be a new game baba and if zanu is fooling itself about the past sham election results they are in for huge rude awakening . Urban voters are not stupid those cards they are buying are just for trading in the city .Remember how Chinotimba morned his 15 000 loaves of bread he gave to voter during a by election in H/ fields and he lost to Mungofa , Morgan has tried his best to make people stand up and kickout zanu he was even attacked and nearly died and still Gumbo and Pedzisayi can not remember that . Zimbabweans are docile and weak they will never confront Mugabe simple as that . You can go and shiit at their doorsteps if you are zanu nothing will happen to you and if you persist doing that they will cross the boarder and go to SA leaving you alone .

Diibulaanyika - 17 June 2015

Liberation ipi yacho isu takanga tigere zvakanaka ne ma bhunu?

Terera - 17 June 2015

Tsvangirai musoro wake hautore mushe - akamhanya kuita mu elections muna 2013 asi iye zvino avekuti "boycott" zvichabatsira chiyi manje? Ma elections awaifanirwa kuita boycott ndo emuna 2013.

Terera - 17 June 2015

musoro wake unomurwadza. thats why achiubata. same nema sapota ake vana @diinula. they praise sing a bygone. by now they should have had another person but the guy is clinging to power. he is a handiende not a democrat. acharovawo dzake 35yrs aripanyanga ye mdc t.

zvirozviyedzwa - 17 June 2015

After reading this I went back to the interview Rugare Gumbo had with Lance Guma back in 2011. In that interview Rugare Gumbo rubbishes all suggestions of transparency in electoral processes and even professes ignorance that some people were killed or injured in 2008 elections. Pressed further about violence, he argued, "Ah come on, come on. You know you talk about these violent things, violence, that's the myth that is out there..." In fact he trashed all suggestions on reforms in Zimbabwe. Rugare Gumbo should just shut up and leave long suffering Zimbabweans alone. If he wants to confront Mugabe let him go it alone because this is a selfish agenda to reclaim his lost esteemed role in Zimbabwean politics. There is something called honest and integrity in human trait and judging from your actions all along you dont have it so dont try to sacrifice us for your narrow selfish ego. Zimbabweans may be crying out for real leadership but they do not need Rugare Gumbo and his ilk. Rest in Peace Rugare Gumbo. (Wekwa Biri na Ganyire)

Godwin Chigwedere - 17 June 2015

Save ndiye chete the rest madodi

Sigauke - 17 June 2015

@Zirozviyedzwa uri mata .

Piripiri - 17 June 2015

Zimbabweans should woke up and challenge this regime...we are sick of staying in exile...wish 2018 was tomorow..Mugabe your people are suffering...till when kamudhara?

nasty o - 18 June 2015

@nasty you ran away from this regime and now telling vakasara kuti wake up and fight, dzoka uzotanga iwe na Gumbo tikaona mashingirira tozo joiner. don't talk as if you don't know who you are talking about, as we speak where is Dzamara didn't he challenge but what did he get from it. Dai watokurudzira vanhu kunamata pamwe Mwari vangatinzwa vakapodza nyika yedu.

Pandimire - 18 June 2015

what i see here is that if mnangagwa was to be fired from zanu today he will start talking like gumbo. dont play with us guys. show fruits of repentance. stop talking about morgan who is at present minding his business and worrying about how people of zimbabwe can be helped. he is not talking about anyone. not at all.

see - 18 June 2015

t . You can go and shiit at their doorsteps if you are zanu nothing will happen to you and if you persist doing that they will cross the boarder and go to SA leaving you alone .Jesus Christ , are we as cowardice as this. You have made my day . Kkkkkkk

Dzasukwa - 18 June 2015

Gondo rapotsa nhiyo rinokumba chero marara.

changara - 18 June 2015

Africa has now come to realize that they need to follow the Zimbabwean leader and be real Africans.God bless Zimbabwe, God bless Africa ,God bless President R.G Mugabe.

jmarsmen - 18 June 2015

madyirapazhe zvenyu zvakapfuura tsvimbo yenyu yakapotsa tsuro ikarova shindig .Izhara chete yonetsa, matakadyakare haanyaradzi mwana.Full stop.

jmarsmen - 18 June 2015

Madyirapazhe murimutengesi makabvirotengesa kare kubva kubva kuhondo nanhasi mukungotengesa.penyu pakapfuura zororai murikumusha ku Mberengwa muchirima chibagwe.

lovemore - 19 June 2015

zvirozviedzwa uri mata

jemba - 19 June 2015

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